4/19/2015 Snyder’s Amber Ale V0.1
Brooding Brewer – striving for eggsalence!
I hope to produce a lightly hopped ale. This is the first time I’ve used and boiled hops. In the past I have used hopped malt extract.
3.3 lb Breiss CW Sparkling Amber Malt
2 lb Munton’s Wheat/ Barley Spray Malt
½ t Gypsum
½ oz Cascade hop pellets
½ oz Cascade hop leaves
Lallemand Nottingham Ale Yeast
½ oz Cascade hop pellets boiled 6 min
½ oz Cascade hop leave boiled 2 min
filtered (Britta) Water for 4 ½ gal ale
Lallemand Nottingham Ale Yeast (soften yeast 15m before adding)
Boil 1 oz hops in 1 gal water, add Spray malt, add amber malt in 1 gal water and boil 1 hr. also add warm water to clean out malt can.
Sanitize fermentation bucket. ½ t Sodium MetaBisulfite. About half full (2½ gal) of water. I put the water measuring pitcher in the fermentation bucket solution for a few minutes. The solution is dumped into a 3 gal soup pot in the sink and used to sanitize a stainer, thermometer, sampling cup/glass, and any thing else I think of.
While boiling – have a homebrew!
Strained as dumping hot wart into water. The strainer fell in once. Hopefully it was clean enough. I will not usa a strainer again, it gets too clogged up.
Mixed temperature 95F.
Let Wart sit, in 65F basement for 1½ hr before adding yeast. Yeast instructions said to soften in warm water for 15m before adding to wart. Yeast water solution became very frothy.
Density: 1.044, 5.2%, 11 Balling.
2015/4/23 – After four days I transferred the wart to a glass carboy. This proved to be difficult, as hop leaves clogged the siphon several times. There were many more leaves than I expected. Either more leaves than I thought fell out when I dropped the strainer into the wart, or I did a much poorer job at straining the leaves out, or both 😦 . In trying to restart the siphon, I had more back flow into the wart than I liked. I am nervous about how much I oxygenated and contaminated it. I used the strainer to try to grab most of the floating hops. Leaves seemed to be mostly on the top and the bottom, so I tried to keep the siphon at about the middle of the wart. Eventually I siphoned off about 4 gallons. There was much more sediment in the bottom of the pail than usual, probably due to hop pellets.
The sediment in the bottom I can deal with, but the leaves are an absolute pain. I will not be using hop leaves again until I get a hops boiling bag or two or three.
I expect this to be less of an issue in bottling because 1) few leaves got through the siphon into the carboy. 2) I add the priming sugar using a two stage siphoning process. Hopefully no leaves will be left when I fill the bottles.
Density: 1.014, >½%, 3.5 Balling
I like the flavor of this beer. Its lightly bitter, slightly sweet, full flavor. The clarity was extremely muddy, but this should improve over the next couple weeks. But I did not notice the aroma. My nose isn’t the best. And I’m not sure how discriminating my palate is. I like most things.
Bottling went well. 24 – 12oz bottles & 18 – 16oz bottles. Only a couple leaves got in the bottles. I used a new two-hand bottle capper. Its easier to use than the older one lever one. It sticks too much.
Density: 1.012, about the same as when transferred.
I used ¾ cup corn sugar for priming.
If I get around to making labels, it will be Brooding Brewers Amblin’ Amber Ale, V0.1
(OG – FG) x 131.25 = ABV% about 4.2% alchohol by volume. Good!
Generally I like the taste. There is a slight sour/sharp tinge to it when served at cellar temperature (68F). I see no evidence of bacterial contamination. It is clear, not hyper-heady. I wonder if it is from the gypsum? In fact the head is not quite a prominent as I’d like, especially when served at cellar temperature (65F-68F). At refrigerator temperature (40F?) the slight sour/sharp tinge goes away and the head holds up better. Presumably the CO2 dissolves better in the ale.
I took some to my Godson’s graduation. A few people tried it, with good comments. I’ll bring some of this to the family reunion.
This ale is darker than I expected, not quite black in the carboy, but dark. In a glass it is slightly lighter than the previous bitter.
If I get around to making labels, this will be “Brooding Brewers Ambling Amber Ale, V0.1”. This is NOT to be confused with BeerSmith’s Amblin’ Amber.
2015/4/23 – NEVER EVER use hop leaves, without hop bags!
2015/4/24 – After looking on the web for styles of lightly pale ales, I’ve decided my target is a Cream Ale (which this is not) or something between a Cream Ale and a Pale Ale. This is much darker. I “grew up” on Genesee Cream Ale, But in graduate school adapted to the darker Rainier Ale. I will need to try the Brewer’s Best Cream Ale kit and try to build on that.
(c) 2015, David B. Snyder